Pune-based Sminq aims to remove queues and reduce the waiting time across all the places by giving live updates. Currently available for doctors’ appointments, the platform can be used by doctors and patients to effectively manage their time.
At a glance
Founder: Shachin Bharadwaj, Santhosh Nagarajan, and Sheldon D’Souza
Year it was founded: 2015
Where is it based: Pune
The problem it solves: Eliminates hassle of waiting in a queue by providing real-time information
Funding raised: Raised seed funding of $1 million from Saama Capital and Blume Ventures
Often, getting an appointment to meet a doctor turns out to be a bit of a cruel joke, since the patient turns up on time but ends up meeting the medical practitioner much, much later.
Shachin Bharadwaj and his wife were expecting a child and they too waited in long queues for doctor appointments.
“Getting an appointment at the doctor’s with no certainty as to when you will be getting the service was an exhausting experience. This triggered the idea to start Sminq to remove queues to reduce the waiting time across all the places and help users by giving live updates. We tested the concept with doctor’s appointments and now aim to get into other verticals as well,” explains Shachin.
In 2015, the trio Shachin, Santhosh Nagarajan and Sheldon D’Souza, with an aim to make patients’ wait 100-percent transparent, founded Sminq, a real-time update platform. Without having to be physically present to hold one’s spot, it allows users the ease to check status of their service before making their plans.
By comprehending the trends followed by a doctor at the clinic, the platform’s algorithms predicts the timings that a patient can expect to meet the doctor.
Sminq initially tested waters by making doctors/clinics places live, and broadcasting the live status of the patients in queue. The platform is currently operational in four cities including Pune, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Nasik at 150+ clinics and claims to have a user base of 500,000+.
The team behind Sminq
“I am very fortunate to have a core team with me that has worked with in my previous venture. The core team of Sminq is also the same team at my last successful foodtech venture TastyKhana.com,” Shachin says.
The team comprises Sheldon, Santhosh, Mayank Singh and Sachin. Sheldon (35) is the Chief Architect. A Computer engineer by education, Sheldon realised that business is his calling and decided to co-found Sminq. Santhosh is COO at Sminq. He is an alumnus of NIT Calicut and his first corporate stint was with TATA Motors where he worked for 4.5 years. Mayank (34) heads marketing and product operations at Sminq. He was associated with food giants like Domino’s and Essel Group in the past. Mayank has an MBA in Entrepreneurship & Leadership from Amity Business School. Shachin is the ex CEO and founder of foodtech startup Tastykhana.com (a Delivery Hero venture). He was the force behind the company’s multiple funding rounds and a successful exit in 2014 when it was acquired by Rocket Internet-backed Foodpanda. He is a Computer engineer by education and started his career with Synygy India. Presently, as the CEO of Sminq, Shachin is responsible for overall operations, branding and business growth.
Sminq is currently working in the technology-driven real-time update providing space. Real-time updates and live information about places and events has become a trend now, and everyone from WhatsApp to Google is trying to master the art of providing it.
Sminq is betting on its global app to create a niche among other players.
It is a community-driven platform that broadcasts real-time information from places around the world.
Shachin notes that while social media platforms focus on people more than the content, the Sminq Global app is keen on the content and creates no social pressure for getting followers.
How Sminq works
Currently, Sminq is available via web and app for booking appointments and accessing last-minute bookings at the popular doctors without wait. Sminq for Business provides real-time updates of the waiting room for doctors, helping healthcare professionals stay abreast of the patients waiting in the queue and manage their appointments efficiently.
The startup has another offering in the form of Sminq – World’s Places - Live Now, a second app that allows users to perform actions like updating about places being crowded or products not being available, as well as long waiting time at restaurants, government offices, popular monuments, sighting of a celebrity etc
“It is a global platform for people to share what’s ‘Live Now’ at places around the world. It is a fun, community-based places network to help one another be prepared, save time and improve everyone’s experience. Since it is real time, you will find only the most recent and relevant data on the app,” adds Shachin.
This short video shows how Sminq is helping doctors
Decoding the future roadmap
Backed by a 26-member team, the platform has received a seed funding of $1 million from Saama Capital and Blume Ventures.
“Being the initial stage we don’t have a revenue model set in stone. As we grow we can have various businesses coming to us for broadcasting their updates to the world, that is come and advertise with us,” Shachin says.
Sminq is currently working with 145 doctors in four cities and has had more than 50,000 bookings via its apps for users and doctors. Sminq- Doctor’s Appointments have saved on average 75 minutes per visit.
The platform is looking to hit an annual revenue of Rs 1 crore this year with Sminq – Doctor’s Appointment.
“Our vision by 2019 is to drive 100,000 users every day to use Sminq to help them make a decision when they head out, creating a real-time information network of places around the world for and by people globally. The goal is to revolutionise the way real-time information is consumed and let users have a smooth ‘just-in-time’ experience on the app,” Shachin explains.